Water for the win

2018-05-09

Gordon Bogden pasted an exclamation point to the conclusion of this year’s CIM Convention. The Chairman of Black Loon Metals used his presentation at the Management and Finance Day Closing Lunch to give the mining industry a pep talk on occasion of CIM’s 120th anniversary, on the final day of the event which set a new high mark for attendance.  


“One hundred years ago, miners were treated with respect. Today if we say we are miners, we are treated with disdain,” said Bogden who has a long history in the resource sector and finance. He then argued that the mining industry has an untapped opportunity to restore some of that past glory.


The industry’s success with water management, Bogden declared, should be the foundation on which the industry rebuilds public trust. After years of operating mines in areas where water is scarce, miners have learned lessons that are transferable and in demand at a time when water crises are expected to have among the largest impact on people around the world. Moreover, the continuing efforts to limit water usage and increase recycling by companies, research councils and universities, said Bogden, will ensure that the industry will continue to lead in this realm.


His assignment for the attendees was to amplify the ongoing discussion about this resource. “I want you to think about your use of water. How much do you use? How much does it cost? If you are in exploration, ask that question of your drilling company. If you are on a board, ask that of your executive team.”


Investors’ current infatuation with technology means that the value of all the public mining companies in the world equals that of just one of the tech giants Apple, Amazon and Google. The romance will cool, said Bogden, and when investors go looking for other opportunities, miners need to be ready to make their case and their success with managing water resources should be part of the pitch.


“We need to be loud and proud about our leadership in this. This is something that can make us money and it can improve our image and help sustain the industry for another 120 years.”